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American Pastoral (2016)

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An All-American college star and his beauty queen wife watch their seemingly perfect life fall apart, as their daughter joins the turmoil of '60s America.

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(based on the novel by), (screenplay)
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1,071 ( 141)
2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Swede Levov
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...
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Lou Levov
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Jerry Levov
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Vicky
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Rita Cohen
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Sylvia Levov
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Agent Dolan
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Penny Hamlin
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Nathan Zuckerman
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Merry Levov (8 Years Old) (as Ocean Nalu James)
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Bill Orcutt
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Storyline

Seymour Levov, going by the nickname of 'Swede' in the Jewish community he was born into, was even more of an all-American than Douglas Fairbanks himself. He had just everything an American idol can dream of: not only was the tall muscular young man his high school star athlete but he married a beauty queen named Dawn into the bargain. And as if all this were not enough, Swede later became the successful manager of the glove factory his father had founded, which allowed him to live with his wife in a beautiful house in the New Jersey countryside. Well-mannered, always bright, smiling and positive, conservative but with a liberal edge, what bad could ever happen to him ? And yet... And yet this was reckoning without fate and its obnoxious irony, Swede and Dawn's nemesis manifesting itself in the person of Merry, their beloved daughter who in her teens unexpectedly turned into a violent activist... Written by Guy Bellinger

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A radically ordinary story. See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some strong sexual material, language and brief violent images | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

21 October 2016 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El fin del sueño americano  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$149,038 (USA) (21 October 2016)

Gross:

$541,457 (USA) (25 November 2016)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

(archive footage)|

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Phillip Noyce was set to direct but drop out. See more »

Goofs

At a backyard barbecue, Lou Levov is reading a copy of the New York Post which is in broadsheet format. The New York Post in the early 1970s was a tabloid. See more »


Soundtracks

Heaven On Earth
Written by Buck Ram
Performed by The Platters
Courtesy of Island Records
under license from Universal Music Enterprises
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User Reviews

 
The loss of innocence
9 January 2017 | by (Ghent, Belgium) – See all my reviews

America lost its innocence in the sixties. The post-war dream of a wealthy, successful society which could be an example to the world, was shattered by Vietnam, race riots and political murders. Instead of a shining example, America turned out to be a ruthless, violent and unequal society.

The country has never really recovered. The innocence and the optimism of the fifties and the first half of the sixties have never come back. Watergate, Columbine, Sandy Hook, Iraq, 9/11, Waco, you name it.

'American Pastoral' documents this loss of innocence. The lead character, Swede Levov, is the archetype of the successful American. Handsome, rich, intelligent, successful, considerate: he is the ideal man, just as America was the ideal society. Or rather: he tries to be the ideal man, just as America tried to be the ideal society.

But his life is shattered when his only daughter disappears. Slowly, Swede Levov has to come to grips with the notion that his lovely girl has killed several innocent people in a bombing campaign by a radical counter-culture movement. He starts an obsessional search for his daughter, while his wife develops mental problems, and his company is threatened by rioting, changing consumption patterns and competition from low-cost countries.

It's not easy to get all this into a movie. That's probably why it took so long to get this project realized. Director Ewan McGregor does a decent job with this adaptation of Philip Roth's novel (which I haven't read). But it was all a bit too polished to my taste. That's surprising for someone who has risen to fame with Trainspotting, which is the complete opposite of a polished film. What I missed was something surprising, out of the ordinary, something with a sharp edge. A lot of it has to do with how the film looks: even the roughest scenes don't look really rough. The film lacked just a little bit of the roughness, the madness and the craziness that made Trainspotting such a great movie.


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why Phil Noyce?! Nick_Dets
To those who have read the book... tam358
American Pastoral a movie? juliench99
Sela Ward as the Swede's wife? dalegcollier
script? funkypiranha
The ending Em-25
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